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Jun 27, 5:10 PM EDT

US Attorney: Blagojevich verdict 'bittersweet'

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CHICAGO (AP) -- The top federal prosecutor in Chicago says the verdict delivered in Rod Blagojevich's trial sends a "loud and clear message" that the ousted Illinois governor committed serious crimes.

But U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald calls Blagojevich's conviction "a bittersweet moment." He says it is sad to again be dealing with a verdict against a former Illinois governor - just five years after Gov. George Ryan was convicted on corruption charges.

Fitzgerald says he hopes the message is heard this time that such actions will not be tolerated.

The jury on Monday found Blagojevich guilty on 17 of the 20 charges he faced, including charges that accused him of trying to sell or trade President Barack Obama's former U.S. Senate seat.

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